Revolution Day
November 20

By Jessica Chilián
Photography by National History Museum

Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

The Day of the Mexican Revolution is commemorated every year on November 20. It is a date to celebrate the beginning of the Mexican Revolution, the most important event in the history of Mexico in the 20th century. This armed conflict originated as a consequence of the rejection of a large part of the population towards the dictatorship of General Porfirio Díaz, who ruled for thirty years.

During the Porfiriato, Mexico was governed by an economic elite, dominated by landowners and foreign capital owners. All this produced great injustices and inequalities, and a growing discontent among citizens. For these reasons, Francisco I. Madero, opponent of the regime and candidate for the presidency under the slogan “effective suffrage, no re-election”, calls for rebellion in the San Luis Plan to take up arms against the government on the 20th November 1910.

For this reason, historians consider that on November 20, 1910, the Mexican Revolution officially began, a political and social movement responsible for the great transformations that occurred in Mexico in recent history.

November 20 is a public holiday in Mexico, during which parades, flag honors, music troupes and sports demonstrations are performed, among other things. The purpose of these acts is to remind the new generations of the spirit of the revolution. Today, due to article 74 of the Federal Labor Law, the third Monday in November is considered the official day to commemorate the revolution. Previously, it was celebrated on November 20, regardless of the day it fell.

The Mexican Revolution was an armed conflict that began in 1910, as a consequence of popular discontent towards the dictatorship of Porfirio Díaz, and that would lead to a civil war that would radically transform the political and social structures of the country. It is considered the most important historical event in the history of Mexico in the 20th century. The Revolution began with the uprising led by Francisco I. Madero, who opposed the reelection of General Porfirio Díaz to the presidency, a dictator who had ruled the country for more than thirty years.

Later other political forces would join, including two of the most emblematic leaders of the revolutionary movement: Pancho Villa, in the north, and Emiliano Zapata, in the south. Among the demands of the revolution were a genuine democratic system of government, greater social rights, a just agrarian reform for the peasants, and freedom and equality for the people.

Causes of the Mexican Revolution

One of the main causes of the Mexican Revolution is the dictatorship of Porfirio Díaz, who for more than thirty years exercised arbitrary power, distributing perks among a small privileged group of landowners, industrialists and foreign investors. Despite the material advances and economic progress that the country experienced during his tenure, the situation of social injustice in Mexico deepened and worsened during those years. Thus, then, the crisis of the Porfiriato, the democratic efforts of Madero and the serious situation of the peasants, product of the large-scale exploitation, produced a popular awakening that materialized in the Mexican Revolution.

Consequences of the Mexican Revolution

The Mexican Revolution is one of the first social revolutions of the 20th century and was responsible for bringing Mexico into the 20th century. Among its achievements and consequences, we can mention the following:

  • Resignation of Porfirio Díaz
  • Promulgation of a new constitution in 1917
  • Nationalization of the soil and subsoil
  • Agrarian reform
  • Reform of the public education law
  • Nationalization of oil
  • Improvement of the employment situation of workers
  • Creation of trade unionism
  • Distribution of large estates among the peasantry

 

Source:
Bank of Wellness, National Credit Society, Development Banking Institution